Will vaping set off smoke alarms?

Will vaping set off smoke alarms?

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So you,ve gotten yourself a new mod, you,ve set it up, put your favorite vape juice in it, and you,re ready for a vaping session. Then you notice the smoke detector above you, and a question crosses your mind:

Will vaping set off smoke detectors?

The short answer is yes, if you chain vape right next to or very close to a smoke detector, you,re going to set it off. Then the alarm starts and you,ll be lucky if it shuts off in less than five minutes.

However, depending on the type of smoke detector you have in your home and how close you vape to it, it,s possible you never set it off. Trust us on this, we,ve done science experiments on it. Well, not in a lab, but you get what we mean.

Vapor Versus Smoke

We can hear your first question: if vapor isn,t smoke, how come smoke alarms go off when I'm vaping?

Vape School can answer that for you. Simply put, the difference between smoking and vaping is that smoke is created by combustion and vapor created by the controlled heating of an e-liquid.

Vapor is actually thicker than smoke, and because fire alarms were created to detect smoke, that means they also detect vapor. Sorry, there is no way around it.

Types of Smoke Detectors

There are two different types of alarms: ionic and photoelectric. They work differently, but because they can both detect vapor, we're going to discuss them.


Ionic smoke detectors use, you guessed it, ions in the air to detect smoke. Basically, there,s a chamber in the device that holds a current of radioactive material. When smoke enters the chamber, it disrupts the current, which sets off the alarm.

If you,re wondering, ionic smoke detectors are best at detecting actual fires and are less useful in detecting vapor.


Photoelectric smoke detectors work by using a light source in a chamber. The light is aimed away from a light sensor. When smoke enters the chamber, it redirects the light to the sensor. That sets off the fire alarm.

For curious folk, photoelectric smoke detectors do a good job of detecting smoke, so if you chain vape in your house and you have this type of alarm, expect it to go off a lot.

The Experiment

We did a short vaping smoke detector test. We gathered our supplies, including our two vaping smoke alarm devices, and went into a room that measures roughly 1350 cubic feet.

Our test proved what many vapers commonly believe: the closer you are to a smoke alarm when you,re vaping, the higher chance you have of setting that sucker off. The opposite is true too.

So there you have it, an understanding of how smoke detectors work and how vaping can affect it. No need to thank us; we,re always looking out for you. If you have any questions or comments, leave them below so we can respond.

Thanks for reading! For more helpful articles and vape tutorials, Click Here to visit ZampleBox Vape School


Mar 12th 2024 Zamplebox


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